GCE Teacher and Student Guidance Journalism in the Media and Communications Industry A2: 2 Online Print and Broadcast Feature Portfolio

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1 GCE Teacher and Student Guidance Journalism in the Media and Communications Industry A2: 2 Online Print and Broadcast Feature Portfolio (For first teaching from September 2013)

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3 Contents Page 1 Planning and Research 3 2 The Case Study 3 3 The Statement Of Intentions 5 4 The Online Feature Article 5 5 The Three Minute Package 6 6 The Evaluation 6 7 Ethical Considerations 7 Appendix 1: Useful Resources and Websites 8 Appendix 2: Further Reading and Websites (for teachers) 9

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5 1 Planning and Research Planning and Time Management are important considerations when undertaking your A2:2 Online Print and Broadcast Feature Portfolio. When organising the schedule of work with your teacher, time for planning and evaluation should be factored in as well as time for the writing of the case study and the production of the two features. These are important aspects of your overall submission and will form part of the assessment. What is primary and secondary research? Primary research is the work done by you first hand. It is what you find out for yourself or the information and details you assemble from your own activities. It involves firsthand observation and/or questioning/interviewing. You might interview someone or visit a particular site to find out what you want to know or to add details and interest to your story. Secondary research uses the facts or information gathered by someone else. It is a retelling or writing of another person s information. It is a sort of editing of other people s primary research. The process of undertaking primary and secondary research and the use of planning is crucial to the production of the portfolio and must be ongoing throughout your work on the portfolio. It is recommended that you keep a log detailing the planning and research undertaken. You must submit a statement of intentions (maximum 400 words) and a sample of material from your log (maximum 10 pages) as evidence of your planning and research. Your teacher must consider this log as evidence of AO2 (Planning and Research) when marking your portfolio. 2 The Case Study The Case Study must be focused on a contemporary national or international news story which is being reported in the mainstream media at the time when you are working on your portfolio. It cannot be a story from the past but must be on-going and developing as you research and work on it. The Case Study needs to be analytical and what you explore and the issues which you analyse in it should be reflected in your practical work which makes up the rest of the portfolio. The study must be based on one of the following themes: culture and arts; crime; education; human interest; politics; social issues; sport; and war and conflict. 3

6 The Case Study should focus on analysing the different ways in which the story is communicated across a range of formats and platforms. You should compare the presentation by one public service broadcaster and one commercial broadcaster; and one red top tabloid online newspaper and one quality online newspaper. The choice of story will depend on what is currently making the news when this unit is being undertaken along with your own personal interests and preferences. For example, if you are a keen follower of sports this might be a theme you could choose. However, do not rush to select a topic just because you like the subject. Other stories may offer you more opportunities for development. You will need to select a story which allows you to consider the key cross-platform concepts, contexts and debates which you have been studying in A2:1: language forms and conventions; audience; representation; and ownership. You must compare and contrast coverage of your chosen story, analysing the differences between the two sources (public service/commercial broadcasters; red top/quality online newspapers). It is important to remember, at the selection stage, that you are going to have to produce two features on the story you select and that you must include some primary local sources and also have a local or regional focus to your features. Remembering and considering these factors might help you make the selection of the best story to use. It is suggested that you begin by tracking a number of stories and then, in discussion with your teacher, focus in on one which you wish to use for the Case Study. If you have several stories which are of interest to you, then consider what secondary research is available for each and select the one which offers the most possibilities for development and primary research. The more extensive and rigorous your primary and secondary research strategies are, the better your Case Study will be. 4

7 3 The Statement of Intentions What is a Statement of Intentions? It is your opportunity to think about the story you have selected for the Case Study and to identify how you will explore the key cross-platform concepts, contexts and debates through the features you create and your Evaluation. Writing the Statement of Intentions enables you to focus on what you will need to include and what you intend to achieve. It should clarify the original intentions for both. It must show your choices and decisions regarding: original intentions for both pieces in relation to news value, audience and purpose; primary and secondary research including your selection of sources; presentational and technical formats you intend to use; and the legal and ethical considerations which you will have to take into account. 4 The Online Feature Article There are three aspects to this part of your Portfolio. Firstly, you have to produce an 800 word online feature article on your chosen story. It should be presented as it would appear on a news web page. Secondly, there should be an accompanying one-minute montage of related vox pops which may be either in podcast (audio) or vodcast (video) format. These vox pops should represent local audience responses and views on the featured story. You should include some primary sources (especially in the vox pop montage) so that your story has a local or regional appeal to it. Thirdly, you must accompany the feature and vox pops with a statement (maximum 100 words) which outlines how you aim to further use technology to maximise exposure of your story and interaction with the audience online. You will be demonstrating the core journalism skills of identifying, collecting, selecting and presenting news and information to construct a story for the web and aspects of web site design for the effective presentation of content. You will also use your multimedia skills, either audio (podcast) or video (vodcast) recording and editing. 5

8 5 The Three Minute Package The second feature of your Portfolio is a three minute package for either radio or TV broadcast. The Package is a voiced report with clips of audio and actuality (material recorded elsewhere), if for radio, moving image/pictures if for TV. A news package is usually the longest type of storytelling found on radio or television newscasts. It is a selfcontained taped news report. Usually, the newscaster will read an introduction live, then the pre-recorded story will be played. A common part of a news package is the appearance of a reporter talking to the camera. The package for your Portfolio should have a local or regional focus (because the national/international nature of the story makes primary research difficult). It must also include some facts and information of wider interest. This can be achieved through your use of links and voiceover, where you can comment or quote the material. You may include some re-editing of found individual audio or video clips but not sections of reported footage There are four elements to a TV package: The intro or cue it is normally straightforward. It should sum up the story, explain why it is important and grab the viewers attention and interest right away. The pictures the opening picture used is very important. It and the accompanying script need to set out the most important aspect of the story. The links the reporter s words read over the pictures. They should provide the facts of the story and tell the narrative in the journalist s words. The soundbites from the interviewees featured in the package can add human interest to the story. The journalist can present the facts but an interviewee can add opinion or emotion to the presentation. 6 The Evaluation When your portfolio (Case Study, online feature article and three minute package) is completed, you must submit an evaluation. It should be a maximum of 500 words. In it you must reflect on the effectiveness (the strengths and weaknesses) of your research, writing, interviews, and technical production skills. It is important that you reflect on the process you undertook to achieve your finished features as well as the finished products themselves. You should comment on: the research methods you used; your story structure and selection and your prioritisation of facts; your use of language as appropriate to the story type and audience; your use of appropriate technical and presentational features; and any legal and ethical considerations you had to consider. You should also refer back to your original statement of intentions in the evaluation and reflect on the observations made in your Case Study and how these are reflected in your finished features. 6

9 7 Ethical Considerations In your AS 2: Print Portfolio, you had to consider the legal and ethical implications of your use of sources and apply your knowledge and understanding of the current codes of practice and industry guidelines in the print media when producing your Print Portfolio. In A2 1: Cross-Platform Journalism and Digital Interactivity you will have looked at Journalism Law and Ethics as one of the key debate areas in the media and have discussed the BBC Producers Guidelines and the Ofcom Guidelines. The National Union of Journalists Code of Conduct states that a journalist: 1. At all times upholds and defends the principle of media freedom, the right of freedom of expression and the right of the public to be informed. 2. Strives to ensure that information disseminated is honestly conveyed, accurate and fair. 3. Does his/her utmost to correct harmful inaccuracies. 4. Differentiates between fact and opinion. 5. Obtains material by honest, straightforward and open means, with the exception of investigations that are both overwhelmingly in the public interest and which involve evidence that cannot be obtained by straightforward means. 6. Does nothing to intrude upon anybody s private life, grief or distress unless justified by overriding consideration of the public interest. 7. Protects the identity of sources who supply information in confidence and material gathered in the course of his/her work. 8. Resists threats or any other inducements to influence, distort or suppress information, and takes no unfair personal advantage of information gained in the course of his/her duties before the information is public knowledge. 9. Produces no material likely to lead to hatred or discrimination on the grounds of a person s age, gender, race, colour, creed, legal status, disability marital status or sexual orientation. 10. Does not by way of statement, voice or appearance endorse by advertisement any commercial product or service save for the promotion of his/her work or of the medium by which he/she is employed. 11. A journalist shall normally seek the consent of an appropriate adult when interviewing or photographing a child for a story about his/her welfare. 12. Avoids plagiarism. As you develop your features, you will need to identify any ethical considerations which shape your content and style of presentation and include comments about these in your Evaluation. 7

10 Appendix 1: Useful Resources and Websites Fact Files Audio and Video Recording Tips Speaking for Radio Tips Broadcast Journalism Conventions Radio Bulletins Radio Interviewing Tips Writing for Radio Journalism and Representation Journalism and Ethics Journalism and Law Legal Errors in Reporting Ofcom Guidelines Radio Packages Introduction to Sources Glossary of Broadcast Journalism Terms Roles in Cross-Platform Broadcast Journalism Useful resources Some useful websites _radio odcast (Sample Scripts) (Recording using your iphone) (Ethical issue) (News writing for television) (Writing tips) 8

11 Appendix 2: Further Reading and Websites (for teachers) Books: Briggs, M (2013) Journalism Next: A Practical Guide to Digital Reporting and Publishing London: Sage Publications Bull, A. (2010) Multimedia Journalism: A Practical Guide, Abingdon: Routledge Friend, C. & Singer, J. (2007) Online Journalism Ethics: Traditions and Transitions, New York: M.E. Sharpe Frost, C. (2011) Journalism Ethics and Regulation Cambridge: Pearson Ibbotson, T. & Rudin, R. (2003) An Introduction to Journalism, Abingdon: Focal Press Ward, M. (2002) Journalism Online, Abingdon: Focal Press Useful Websites: (A website for those teaching journalism) (Writing for broadcast including a sample script) 9

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